YAHOO NEWS – Turkish artillery on Saturday shelled areas of Aleppo province in northern Syria held by Kurdish forces, a monitor said, as Ankara said it could launch a ground assault alongside Saudi troops.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Turkish artillery struck areas of Aleppo, including Minnigh airbase recently taken by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia from Islamist rebels.
Ankara considers the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its YPG militia to be branches of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) which has waged a decades-long insurgency against the Turkish state.
The shelling came shortly after Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Ankara would, if necessary, take military action against the PYD.
“We can if necessary take the same measures in Syria as we took in Iraq and Qandil,” he said in a televised speech.
The premier was referring to Turkey’s bombing campaign last year against PKK targets in their Qandil mountain stronghold in northern Iraq.
Asked if Saudi Arabia could send troops to the Turkish border to enter Syria, Cavusoglu said: “This is something that could be desired but there is no plan. Saudi Arabia is sending planes and they said ‘If the necessary time comes for a ground operation then we could send soldiers’.”